It's inevitable. Every spring, potholes start popping up on Maine roads, and it seems like it keeps getting worse every year.

Just what causes a pothole? According to Wikipedia,

Water first weakens the underlying soil; traffic then fatigues and breaks the poorly supported asphalt surface in the affected area. Continued traffic action ejects both asphalt and the underlying soil material to create a hole in the pavement.

Wikipedia - Public Domain
Wikipedia - Public Domain

The worst part about potholes is they tend to lurk on the right side of the road, just about where your right wheel travels. If you're driving in the dark, you might never see them coming. That's exactly what happened to me. My right tire hit hard, and I thought everything was okay until the low tire pressure light came on.

The next day, I took it to the dealership, and $375 later I had a new tire. Great. I wish I could bill the town, but that's not how it works.

According to Noyes Hall & Allen Insurance in South Portland,

Maine law absolves municipalities from liability for damage caused by potholes unless the pothole was reported more than 24 hours before your accident, and untreated. This is difficult to prove, which means you’re usually not going to get help from the city or town hall. Maine State Law is even more lenient with state-owned roads: the state of Maine is never liable for damage caused by potholes.

So you need to get pretty lucky to have the town or city pay for any damage from a pothole. It's usually all on you, so take it easy on the roads and be on the lookout for those potholes before you end up costing yourself more money than you have to spend.

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